It seems like this final week in February has become an annual time to see the latest marketing campaigns and TV commercials of Disneyland Resort Paris being premiered. Exactly one year ago today, we saw The Celebration Continues… Big Time! unwrapped on our TV screens, whilst two years ago, the ever-beautiful advertisements for the 15th Anniversary itself unravelled.
This year, the TV spot is… floating onto our screens, naturally filled with hundreds upon hundreds of colourful balloons to advertise Mickey’s Magical Party.
The lively spot begins with a stunning shot of balloons flying above the clouds, mountains in the background, with a strong yellow tint. As the second shot appears, of balloons flying around the side of a bushy, clearly sun-drenched hill toward a noticeably distant city from most of North West Europe, it looks like those balloons have reached further than any of us could have predicted…
Indeed, to film this new commercial, production was taken all the way to… South Africa! According to admin Kristof on magicforum, even the It’s Dance Time DJ podium and a replica of one corner of the new Central Plaza stage were taken, along with all the characters and costumes you see, to then only be filmed in front of green-screen with the real Disneyland Resort Paris backdrops inserted later!
This practice isn’t uncommon though, as member experiment627 adds, “a lot of commercials are being shot in South Africa, for there are landscapes that resemble Europe quite a bit and you pretty much got sun and blue skies most of the year.”
As the balloons reach the city streets, one bumps right into a young boy running home from school.
He grabs hold of it, pulls the invitation from its string…
And opens up the envelope to reveal a Mickey shape and the Mickey’s Magical Party logo.
Miraculously, he’s then transported immediately to Disneyland Resort Paris!
The voiceover of the TV spot is different again to previous years, with a clearer and more placid voice beginning “This year, it’s Mickey’s Magical Party, and Disneyland is expecting an extraordinary hero… you!”.
“Discover DJ Stitch’s first fantastic show,” he continues, as shots of the new Dance Time podium and its blue and pink-dressed cast in front of Space Mountain play, with several other guests dancing on the multi-coloured dance mats.
“…The new attraction, Playhouse Disney – Live on Stage!,” continues the announcer, with shots of the Playhouse Disney puppets…
…the young boy laughing along, and a full depication of the stage (though likely not the real thing), as if set up for the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse scene…
The advert reaches its conclusion as another balloon sweeps across the screen to reveal a lively Mickey Mouse running across the new Central Plaza stage — another green-screen creation.
The voiceover adds “…and Mickey and friends’ exciting new show, and many more surprises”.
Here we see Mickey and Goofy dancing on a recreation of the stage, with brightly-dressed dancers behind, mostly in white and red colours, with the men wearing orange shirts.
Notice also that the Castle has been touched-up with its recently-revealed overlay of new decorations. Here, though, the “Mickey & Friends” plaque covering the main window appears to match its oval shape, rather than the uncomfortable circle seen in the concept.
Mickey shows us some moves, then we suddenly cut to the generic Disney Parks endboard…
As with the commercials of the previous two years, it seems Disneyland Resort Paris are required to use this generic branding to end their TV advertisements, featuring a bizarre mélange of all the Disney castles but now with added ballons.
The endboard is clear and the colours do work well with the red of Mickey’s Magical Party, but the overall effect is probably slightly jarring to the viewer, being so different to the footage just seen — and featuring a Castle that, as anyone knows, doesn’t exist anywhere — especially not Disneyland Resort Paris.
Please, Walt Disney Parks & Resorts, can’t we have the real Castle for each resort?
It’s a lively, colourful, sunny and very well-produced TV spot, though, and it’s certainly brilliant to see real Disneyland Resort Paris locations used for once, if only via green-screen. You’ll probably notice two large elements of the party are entirely absent, however. Well, one major element and one not-so-major: Disney’s Stars ‘n’ Cars and Minnie’s Party Train.
To skip the Party Train is obviously no surprise, but many fans would agree they’d have expected to see something of the Studios’ large new parade event in the TV spot. Looks like the resort’s old fear, of mentioning the existance of Walt Disney Studios Park in a TV commercial, lives on…!
The TV spot is playing now in the UK, international versions will appear from next month.
Screencaps © Disney.